Get the Most Out of Your Interviews: Move Beyond Asking the ‘Biggest Weakness’ Question

Have you ever asked this question or a variation of it? What did you learn from it? That someone has prepared for their interview in advance by coming up with an answer that could equally be considered a positive or negative.

If you have asked this question, I’m sure you have heard something along the lines of “I work too hard”, “I strive to find the perfect solution and put myself under greater pressure than is necessary” or “I can be overly critical of my own work”.

Next time, try tweaking it to:

  • How do you think you could improve upon your skills and abilities?
  • What areas do you feel you could improve on given the opportunity?
  • Thinking about the skills needed in this role, are there any areas in which you feel you would need some extra support?
  • What was the last thing you learned? why? how? what difference did it make in your role?

This little adjustment will give you far more useful information and the candidate will feel like they are giving you a more realistic insight into their capabilities.